Why did Daenerys burn King’s Landing?

Why did Daenerys burn King’s Landing on Game of Thrones? Pic credit: HBO

With barely a week left until the series finale, Game of Thrones delivered one of the most brutally dark episodes since the days of The Red Wedding. This is all thanks to Daenerys going full beast mode on King’s Landing, killing everyone in her path — both guilty and innocent.

This decision was unfortunate, especially for a character who at the beginning wanted to rid the world of tyrants. Now, she’s no better than her father — who held the infamous title of The Mad King.

But why would a character who started out so noble make the decision to commit genocide on King’s Landing? Here is everything we know that led to her becoming a Mad Queen.

Why did Daenerys burn King’s Landing on Game of Thrones?

There are a number of factors that can be applied to why Dany lost her edge at King’s Landing. The most obvious would be the public execution of her loyal servant Missandei on the walls of the kingdom.

The added moment of Missandei yelling Dracarys did not help either, with it being a message to Dany to kill them with “Dragonfire.”

To make things more complicated, Dany was already losing grip with her legacy with Jon’s secret becoming public knowledge. It was clear she was about to switch leadership styles when she mentioned that she might have to lead in “fear” since the people “love” him.

Plus, to add to the Mad Queen psycho sundae, the Targaryen bloodline has a rabid history of madness which includes her deceased father Aerys, who was a genocidal maniac. As Varys says so delicately to Jon:

“They say every time a Targaryen is born, the gods toss a coin and the world holds its breath.”

All this said, producer D.B. Weiss expands on the moment where she sits on the wall contemplating whether she accepts the surrender of the city.

The quote begins around the 3:21 mark of Inside the Episode and he describes what he believes to be the catalyst to her madness:

“I don’t think she decided ahead of time that she was going to do what she did. And then, she sees the Red Keep, which is to her the home that her family built when they first came over to this country 300 years ago. It’s in that moment on the walls of King’s Landing when she is looking at that symbol of everything that was taken from her that’s when she makes the decision to make this personal.”

It’s also worth noting this might’ve been the plan all along. The most interesting tidbit of all is Dany had a vision that foretold this event way back in Season 2 in the House of the Undying.

In the scene, Dany walks up to the Iron Throne which is empty and the roof has been burnt off. The scene also has Snow falling from the sky. A Jon Snow connection perhaps?

Check out the video below and prepare to have a mind-melt of theories form.

As the game of Ice and Fire concludes, it will be fascinating to witness Dany’s fallout after the massacre at King’s Landing.

The show has always done a well-rounded job of conveying the consequences of victory. With Dany’s choices last night, they are bound to be everlasting.

Game of Thrones will conclude its epic run this Sunday on HBO at 9/8c.

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